EurGeol Paul Mc Dermott, PGeo, MSc has been a practicing geologist for over 17 years, working both as an exploration and mining geologist. In that time Paul has worked for a variety of companies from Tara Mines, BHP, ARCON International and Lundin Mining, before becoming a Principal Geologist at Aurum Exploration Services.


He has held numerous roles from Exploration Geologist, Project Geologist, Chief Mine Geologist, Head of Technical Services, and Mine Superintendent. He has strong senior management experience, combined with a strong geological background in both exploration and mining.


His unique skill set ranges from mineral exploration, 3D block modelling, resource estimation, mine geology, mine production, to senior mine management.


1. What does your job at Aurum entail?

My main duties within Aurum are project supervision, project reviews, and 3D block modelling. This includes the supervision of our team of geologists, liaising with clients, tendering, supervision of contracts and contractors, reviewing project potentials, proposing exploration programmes, and 3D block modelling of various commodities up to and including resource estimation. Due to my mining background I also have been appointed Safety Manager and we are currently reviewing our safety systems and response plans.

2. What made you choose this career?

Geology has it all, adventure, outdoor life, travel, variety, volcanoes, earthquakes, treasure hunting. Why would anyone pick anything else?

3. Are you working on any projects at the minute?

I'm working on several projects at the moment from early stage exploration for zinc/lead mineralization in Ireland, writing a NI43-101 report, resource estimation of industrial minerals in Africa, and 3D block modelling for a couple of clients.

4. What is the biggest challenge of your job?

I am a newbie to the consultancy game, so the biggest challenge is probably the transition from client to consultant. I like to think it means I probably have more empathy and understanding of the client.

5. What is the best part of your job?

The variety, there is always something new coming at you, which challenges you and keeps it interesting.

6. When you are not working how do you spend your free time?

Trying to keep a 4 year old and 18 month old out of trouble. It makes work seem easy.

7. If you could do any job in the world what would it be and why?

Sports commentator, they get to go to all the great sporting events and give opinions that don't have to be JORC/NI43-101 compliant.

8. What's your favourite?

Sport - I come from a big sporting family and have been immersed in sport all my life. Like a lot of sports heads I have tried most, but mainly played Gaelic football and basketball in my younger days. Now it is the great evil of golf, and owing to a driver with a mind of its own I get a lot of practice playing out of trees.

TV programme - Thanks to "series link" I get to watch some TV these days. In favour at the moment are Mad Men, Game of Thrones, Modern family and Big Bang Theory. However nothing will ever match Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Movie - I wouldn't be a big movie buff, nevertheless I would be a fan of Collateral, even Tom Cruise was good in it.

Music - I enjoy the full spectrum from Maria Callas to Tiesto, via Springsteen, Radiohead and Portishead. My music taste makes no sense to me.

Place in the World - I have been lucky to have travelled all over the world, with Buenos Aires as my favourite city and Italy probably gets the nod as my favourite country. However, my favourite place in the world is playing "ring a ring a rosy" on our trampoline at home with my two kids, to a chorus of "again, again".